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Overview

Hormonal Imbalance: Treatment, Procedure, Cost and Side Effects

What is the treatment?

Hormonal imbalance is a condition that can affect both men and women. Different factors are responsible for this and it can put several roadblocks in the realization of a healthy body and a healthy mind. In women, hormone levels can fluctuate during puberty, menopause or perimenopause. A man can also experience hormonal imbalance when they go through the ‘male menopause’ phase or when they experience age-related hormonal shift called andropause.

Hormones like estrogen, testosterone, insulin and adrenaline affect the proper functioning of our body. These hormones, secreted from different organs, work together to regulate the different processes in our body. Imbalance of even one hormone can cause a host of health issues. The most common treatments for hormonal imbalance include hormone replacement therapies, birth control pills and thyroid medications. Imbalance of different hormones can cause different side effects.

The most common hormones whose levels fluctuate are estrogen and progesterone in women. This happens primarily due to overuse of birth control pills, undergoing a lot of stress and also overuse of cosmetics. Testosterone imbalance in men leads to thinner, shorter hair or in some cases, hair loss. Apart from the above mentioned treatments, other remedies include over the counter supplements to balance hormones, dietary changes, taking on less stress, exercising more, sleeping more and even taking prescription medicines.

How is the treatment done?

A woman can go for over the counter supplements to treat imbalance of estrogen and progesterone. Such supplements are generally available in the form of a cream or a pill and can be generally acquired without prescriptions. A healthy diet can go a long way in treating hormonal imbalance in both men and women. Having foods rich in zinc helps to manage the level of testosterone. People should include omega-3 fatty acids in their diet as they help in the production of healthy cell membranes. Healthy cell membranes ensure that the hormones reach the intended cells in the body. Estrogen levels can be maintained by taking in lots of fiber. Furthermore, excessive drinking of caffeine or alcohol can also cause hormonal imbalance.

Exercising helps to release such hormones in the blood stream that can offset the harmful effects that can occur due to the imbalance of female reproductive hormones. Another method of improving estrogen production is by reducing stress. Sleeping for 7-9 hours every day is essential to maintain the hormonal balance. Men benefit more from sleeping well as their body produces testosterone during the REM cycle of sleep.

Prescription medicines are generally recommended when other ways to restore hormonal balance have failed. Birth control pills can be sometimes recommended to women as they have powerful physical effects. Anti-depressants and medicines containing menopausal hormone can help to restore hormonal balance in women. Bio-identical hormone replacement therapy helps to balance hormonal imbalance due to aging or irregular lifestyle habits.

Who is eligible for the treatment? (When is the treatment done?)

A person suffering from hormonal balance will exhibit some symptoms like: insomnia, changes in appetite, fatigue, depression, anxiety, low libido, digestive issues, hair loss, hair thinning, weight gain or weight loss and infertility and irregular periods. A person is eligible for treatment if he/she suffers from some or most of these symptoms. A person may not always suffer from hormone deficiency but also from surplus of hormones. Salivary tests offer a good indication of the hormone levels in a person’s body. A person becomes eligible for treatment if such tests find any imbalance of hormones in his/her body.

Who is not eligible for the treatment?

A person who does not suffer from any of the symptoms associated with hormonal imbalance is not eligible. Any person whose hormone levels do not show any discrepancy after he/she has undergone a blood test or a saliva test is not entitled for treatment.

Are there any side effects?

Hormone replacement therapy can increase the risks of heart disease and stroke, cause blood clots to form, cause gallbladder problems and breast issues. It may also cause bloating, headache and hot flashes. Oral birth control pills can increase resistance to insulin and abnormal intolerance to glucose. This may put the person at risk of developing Type-2 diabetes.

What are the post-treatment guidelines?

A person taking medications to treat hormonal imbalance will have to make the corresponding changes in his/her lifestyle to achieve the best results. The treatment for hormonal imbalance is generally a long term process and there are no such post-treatment guidelines. However, sleeping well, exercising and having healthy foods can go a long way in alleviating hormonal imbalance in both men and women.

How long does it take to recover?

A person who has changed his diet and his lifestyle will generally require some time before he/she can understand the good effects. Hormonal changes do not take place suddenly and it will take time for the hormone levels to reach their normal levels even after taking medications. It takes a person about three months to feel the full effects of hormone replacement therapy. The recovery period, hence, will vary from person to person and also depend on the severity of the hormonal imbalance.

What is the price of the treatment in India?

15 tablets of anti androgen or testosterone blockers costs around Rs 25 in India. A person may have to take one daily if there is an imbalance in his testosterone levels. Therefore, the monthly cost comes to around Rs 50 per month. One sheet of estrogen tablets cost around Rs 300. Other hormone replacement therapy medications generally cost around Rs 100 for a week’s dose. Birth control pills generally cost between Rs 100 – Rs 500. Antidepressants are available within a price range of Rs 18 – Rs 3000.

Are the results of the treatment permanent?

Stress is one of the primary causes why men/women suffer from hormonal dysfunction. Stress results in increase in the production of cortisol that causes the depletion of progesterone. Poor gut health can impede the production of sex hormones, adrenal hormones and thyroid hormones. Manifestations of poor gut health include constipation, diarrhea, bloating, reflux and gas. Furthermore, malfunctioning of the thyroid gland can also cause hormonal imbalance. Thus, even if a person has undergone treatment for hormonal imbalance, he/she can experience the same problem if he/she suffers from stress, gastric or thyroid problems.

What are the alternatives to the treatment?

Consuming foods rich in healthy fats like coconut oil, grass-fed butter, avocados and salmon help to treat hormonal imbalance. Adaptogen herbs not only help a person to balance hormones but also protect him/her against various diseases. Ashwagandha is one such herb. Breathing exercises and acupuncture help a person to get relief from stress and thus help to restore hormonal balance.

Safety: Medium Effectiveness: Medium Timeliness: Medium Relative Risk: Medium Side Effects: High Time For Recovery: Medium Price Range:

RS 18 - Rs 3000

Popular Health Tips

The Real Reason You Are Gaining Weight As You Get Older!

B.Sc - Home Science, - SNDT Women's University, Mumbai
Dietitian/Nutritionist, Thane
The Real Reason You Are Gaining Weight As You Get Older!

It’s frustrating to see that though there is little change in diet, weight gain becomes normal as we get older. ‘Tyres’ around the tummy and heavy hips are often seen as a sign of being middle aged. There are many reasons for this change in the rate of weight gain. Some of them are:

  1. Lower metabolic rate: As children and teenagers, the body is constantly growing and changing and hence has a high metabolic rate. Metabolic rate refers to the speed with which fat is burned to produce energy. After the age of 30, this metabolic rate naturally slows down and fewer calories are burned. This leads to the accumulation of fat. The only way to boost your metabolic rate and burn fat is by exercising.

  2. Less muscle mass: With age, the muscles in the body also begin to shrink. Thus, instead of forming muscle, fat cells are formed as a result of digestion. When comparing muscles and fat cells, the former burn more calories and hence when they are unavailable, the rate of burning calories is lowered leading to weight gain.

  3. Weight gain in menopause: When it comes to women, menopause is another trigger for weight gain. This is because, this condition is marked by hormonal imbalances. This leads to a sudden drop in estrogen levels that triggers a response in the body to draw out more estrogen from the fat cells. Ultimately, this leads to the formation of more fat. Men too can suffer from hormonal imbalances as they age. This is seen by a drop in testosterone levels that leads to abdominal weight gain.

  4. Sedentary lifestyle: As we get older, our lifestyle turns more sedentary. A sedentary lifestyle is very unhealthy and leads to not only weight gain, but a number of other problems as well. Without regular exercise, the body’s existing metabolic rate further reduces leading to accumulation of fat cells. To combat this, take half an hour out of your schedule every day to go for a walk, cycle or practice any form of exercise.

  5. Stress: Stress not only affects your psychological health, but your physical well-being as well. Being under pressure or anxious can increase the cortisol levels in the body. This creates hunger pangs that lead to unhealthy snacking. When eating in a stressful condition, little or no attention is paid to the food being eaten or the messages your body is trying to give you. This often results in overeating that causes weight gain.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

2590 people found this helpful

This Is What Happens When You Suffer From Hormonal Imbalances

MBBS, FCPS - Medicine, DNB - General Medicine (I)
Diabetologist, Pune
This Is What Happens When You Suffer From Hormonal Imbalances

Every woman likes to look into the mirror and find not an extra strand of hair on her face, be it the upper lip or near the ears. While it is not uncommon for women to have hair on these and other areas, most women resort to multiple ways to get rid of this. The pattern of this unnecessary hair growth is very similar to the pattern seen in males normally.

This condition of excessive hair growth is known as hirsutism and can be caused by multiple causes, as listed below.

  1. Genetic or racial: While the European women have a more clean face that is free of hair, the Mediterranean and Indian women are highly likely to have more facial hair growth. There is also a strong family history relation, and it is hereditary.
  2. Androgens (testosterone): This is a male hormone, essential for the development of male sexual characters. Though it is present in very minute amounts in all women, in some, there could be higher than these minimal levels, leading to minor masculine characters, facial hair being one of them.
  3. Hormonal imbalances: There are multiple hormonal issues which can manifest as increased facial hair growth. The two most common ones include polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) and adrenal conditions including tumours, Cushing's syndrome, and hyperplasia. In all these cases, there is increased amount of androgens, leading to excessive facial hair.
  4. Medication side effect: Some medications like testosterone, cyclosporine, anabolic steroids, and Minoxidil also lead to increased amounts of facial hair in women. Some other medications used to treat migraines, seizures, schizophrenia, and hypertension can also cause hirsutism. This is indirectly due to increased levels of male hormones in the system, producing these effects.
  5. Birth control pills: These also affect the hormone levels and lead to increased facial hair.
  6. Obesity: Most women with facial hair are also on the heavier side, and most people have a reduction in hair once weight is managed.

Treatment: The underlying cause should be treated for controlling hair growth. If there is an inducing medication, an alternative should be looked at. While hormone levels can be altered, in most cases, not much can be done. These need to be dealt with using one of the following methods - depilatory creams, waxing, plucking, shaving, laser reduction, electrolysis, and weight loss.

When reading through the above, it is obvious that a lot of causes for hirsutism point towards hormones. This also helps identify hormonal abnormalities in the earlier stages. This helps to identify hormonal disorders in their earlier stages, which are managed with lesser complications. The next time you feel there is more hair on your chin or cheeks, get your hormone levels checked.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

4234 people found this helpful

Hormonal Problems of Women - Homeopathic Remedies For It!

BHMS, PG Diploma in Psychological Counselling
Homeopath, Gurgaon
Hormonal Problems of Women -  Homeopathic Remedies For It!

Hormonal imbalance is very common in women who are about to reach their menopause. The setting of menopause can lead to a variety of symptoms like moodiness and depression to hot flashes, insomnia and vaginal dryness. Homeopathy has remedies which are very helpful in relieving the symptoms of menopause, when chosen for an individual as per their history. Homeopathy stimulates the person's healing response to a certain stimulus, allowing the person to heal on their own.

Here are a few homeopathic remedies:

1. Pulsatilla: This is for women who are mild, sensitive and weep very easily during the perimenopause stage. These women might whine when unhappy and are very depressed and sad. The women who need this medication prefer company, companionship and support. She is often uncomfortable and warm in hot rooms especially while experiencing hot flashes. The remedy is helpful in cases of insomnia and empty nest syndrome, a syndrome when children leave home. This often coincides with change in a woman's life. Pulsatilla is very helpful for hormonal imbalance including during the menstrual cycle and peri-menopause phase.

2. Cimicifuga: This is recommended for those women who suffer from severe headaches during perimenopause. The headaches are characterized by a pain in the right side of the neck, which often extends to the right shoulder. This remedy is also helpful in women who feel disappointed and trapped in their lives. Some women who have a feeling of being caged and surrounded by dark clouds also benefit from this. It is considered to be a perfect remedy for many women who experience hormonal changes at the menopausal stage of their lives.

3. Sepia: This remedy is especially helpful for perimenopause and hormonal imbalances. This is helpful in women who feel exhausted and chilly. Sometimes a woman might develop an aversion to her family members especially the children and does not want to care for them. Sepia is known to help women overcome these feelings, enables them to reestablish stability and balances hormones. Some women also get a feeling that their inside are bearing out and get a sensation that their uterus and vagina might fall. This feeling and sensation is eliminated by sepia. Sepia is also helpful for the host flashes, dryness, vaginal irritation and moodiness during this phase of their life.

4. Lachesis: This is indicated in the perimenopausal and menopausal symptoms like the night sweats and hot flashes. This remedy is capable to provide a relief from the occipital headaches associated with the changing hormones. Women who need lachesis might be witty, loquacious, nasty, crib and complain about the body pains which are more significant on the left side, like the left ovary discomfort. This remedy also relieves insomnia and depression related with the hormonal swings.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

3633 people found this helpful

How Hormones Affect Your Health?

MBBS, MD - General Medicine, DM - Endocrinology, DNB Endocrinology, MNAMS, Speciality Certificate (Endo. & Diab.) (MRCP, UK), Fellow of American College of Endocrinology (FACE)
Endocrinologist, Delhi
How Hormones Affect Your Health?

Hormones are vital for the human body. They are basically chemicals released into the bloodstream and travel from one cell to another. They travel through the blood and assist organs in performing numerous functions of the human body. Hormones are responsible for a wide range of activities like growth, puberty, facial hair, stress, mood, reproduction, sleep, reproduction and many more. They are also found in other organisms like plants and animals.

Hormones are secreted by endocrine glands. The endocrine glands include pituitary, adrenal and thyroid glands. The study of the endocrine system and hormones is known as endocrinology. Also, some major diseases are caused by hormone imbalance in the human body. The functions or activities of the body affected by hormone secretion are:

  • Growth and development
  • Metabolism
  • Mood
  • Sexual functions like menstruation, fertility, reproduction.
  • Blood Sugar level

Some vital hormones affecting human health:

  • Estrogen: Also known as the female hormone and responsible for a lot of functions and activities associated with a female body. They are secreted by ovaries and are primarily responsible for reproduction, menopause, puberty, moods and even sleep. High level of estrogen production is rare and mostly occurs because of oral contraceptives. Low level of estrogen is more common among girls and women alike. However, the most common disease experienced by females is PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome). Imbalance of hormones will mostly lead to hair loss, acne, depression and even osteoporosis. You can start by taking supplements like vitamin B complex and magnesium or sometimes even undergo hormonal treatment.
  • Testosterone: It is the male sex hormone. However, they are present in low quantities in females too. The testosterone is responsible for muscle growth and developmental functions. They also control puberty in males, facial hair, libido, erectile functions and formation of sperm. Imbalance can lead to depression, mood swings, insomnia, erectile dysfunction and also acne and hair loss. Excessive secretion of testosterone in females leads to increased hair growth and deepening of the voice. Moreover, regular drinking and smoking may lead to decrease production of testosterone among males.
  • Cortisol: It is one of the many hormones secreted by the adrenal glands. They are responsible for physical, stress regulation, maintenance of the immune system and inflammation, etc. High level of cortisol can lead to stomach ulcers, high blood pressure, fatigue, anxiety and depression. Low level of cortisol may lead to chronic fatigue syndrome and even alcoholism.
  • Insulin: It is one of the most important hormones in the human body and is produced by the pancreas. Insulin is responsible for breaking down carbohydrates in the body and maintaining blood sugar level. Its job is to use the sugar (glucose) from carbohydrates and convert it into energy. An imbalance of insulin leads to high blood sugar level (hyperglycemia) or low blood sugar level (hypoglycemia). Such imbalances can lead to diabetes in humans which vary depending on the blood sugar level of the body.
  • Growth Hormones: They are secreted by the pituitary glands of the body. The hormones are responsible for growth and development in children and teenagers. They are also responsible for proper functioning of the heart, muscle development, metabolism and many more. Imbalances can lead to stunted growth in children. Consult your doctor for ways to boost growth in your child.

Hormones play a major role in the human body. Their deficiency or imbalance can create serious health issues and disease for humans. So the next time you have difficulty in losing weight or suffering from depression, your hormones are equally responsible along with your genes.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

2090 people found this helpful

Know The Different Types Of Hormones Present In The Body!

MD - General Medicine, DM - Endocrinology, MBBS
Endocrinologist, Delhi
Know The Different Types Of Hormones Present In The Body!

Hormones are special chemicals, secreted by endocrine glands in our blood. hormones go to all organ systems of our body and affect their function. they are important at every stage of our life. hormone problems are very common in both men and women. hormone imbalance in our body affects health badly and rarely can be life-threatening as well. Hormone specialist is called Endocrinologist. Endocrinologists are doctors, who specialize in diagnosing and treating hormone disorders.

Various important hormones in the human body are

  1. Growth hormone - Growth hormone disorders result in abnormally short or tall stature, with negative effects on other organ systems as well.
  2. Thyroid hormone - Thyroid hormone disorders cause abnormal growth and puberty, affect sexual function & fertility. Imbalance in thyroid hormone also causes heart disease and neurological problems. rarely very low/high hormone levels result in critical illness and death.
  3. Insulin - Insulin hormone primarily controls glucose metabolism. abnormally high insulin levels cause low glucose levels (hypoglycemia). low insulin levels cause diabetes mellitus (high blood sugar). uncontrolled diabetes increases the risk of heart attack, paralysis, blindness, kidney failure and other serious problems.
  4. Sex hormones - testosterone and estrogen are sex hormones in men and women respectively. disorders of sex hormones result in disorders of puberty, sexual dysfunction, infertility etc.
  5. Parathyroid hormone - This hormone along with vitamin D regulates calcium and bone metabolism. Imbalance of parathyroid hormone and vitamin d cause low or high calcium levels, bone and muscle problems.
  6. Adrenal hormones - Cortisol and aldosterone are main hormones secreted by the adrenal gland. disorders of these hormone cause wt loss/wt gain, diabetes & hypertension at a young age, osteoporosis, weak bones etc.

You should consult an Endocrinologist (hormone specialist) if you have any of these hormone disorders. Wish you long healthy life! In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

3450 people found this helpful

Popular Questions & Answers

I am 43 years old, my gynecologist has examined and told me that I am experiencing hormonal imbalance as I had prolonged menses for nearly 13 days. I need to know if there is homoeopathy medicine for keeping hormones in balance.

NCCH & MCH
Homeopath, Kolkata
Yes there is good treatment for same kindly consult back with details of your menstrual history of last 3 cycles and associated complaints if any.
1 person found this helpful

Hello sir/madam, my age is 18 my height is 5-11 and weight 75 I live in mumbai. I have been mentally depressed for the last 2 years because of my body structure I have really wide hips and less hair on my body I have a navel like a women I really have very less hair I have not hit my puberty till now all of my friends have I don't have strong arms really small fingers and small forearms body hair is also less even girls in the class tease me pick my navel hard and tease me chikni kamar I did gym but to no avail my arms are very lean no energy I have a curve also on my navel even in fat guys you can understand this but my body is totally feminine what is the reason behind this ?I have a curve body.

MBBS, Diploma In Psychological Medicine, Diploma In National Board In Psychiatry
Psychiatrist, Navi Mumbai
Dear lybrate-user, Please meet an endocrinologist to know whether you have hit puberty. But remember 'Body Shaming' is not cool. So don't bother about people who call you names. They usually don't think too much about you, as it is. Focus on people who care about you. Learn to respect yourself. Start looking at small positives in a day. If you still feel low meet a counsellor or Psychiatrist.

I am suffering hair fall problem. I faced the problem of low hair on eyebrow, beard and skin hair. Its growth very slow. Is this hormone imbalance or other. Pls help me.

MD - Homeopathy
Homeopath, Aurangabad
Hair fall is due to many reasons now a day it is common due to stress and busy life check your haemoglobin level IF LESS THEN TAKE HAEMATINIC ANY MULTINATIONAL COMPANY take proper diet (dal vegetables sprouts fruits) and do exercise minimum 15 min if possibles do yoga for 10 min increase water intake minimum 3 to 4 litres per day also take homoeo medicines homoeo medicines are known for to stop hair fall and it actually happens phosphrus 30 (30 no glouble) 2 tds x 2 weeks and reply also comb your hair gently and 2/3 time per day wash with homoeopathic shampoo (sbl or any company) twice a week preaper oil by mixing arnica montana Q 30 ml + any regular hair oil and apply before wash you may consult me privately on this site check my economical packages on this site.

I am 22 years and have less facial hair, my testosterone level is normal, is there any treatment to grow facial hairs?

MD - Homeopathy, BHMS
Homeopath, Vadodara
There may be treatment but they are having side effects and my suggestion is to avoid them. Better leave it alone. By repeated shaving it will be thicker.

Dear Doctors, What is a hormonal change? How does it affects the body? What are the symptoms of hormonal changes in men aged above 40 years and, how can we combat them?

MD - Homeopathy, BHMS
Homeopath, Vadodara
There are many hormones.. and our whole body works on the actions of hormones... so any change from having appetite, to having sexual urges to growth and degeneration all is done by hormones... The changes are normal... abnormal changes are to be taken care of by healthy life style and proper homoeopathic treatment whenever needed....